Ex-UK Prime Minister, Blair, pledges to assist Nasarawa harness potential, deliver democratic dividends
...as state seeks TBI assistance on governance structure, others
Tony Blair, a former Prime Minister of Britain, has acknowledged that Nasarawa State has huge potential that needed to be harnessed, saying that with its connectivity round the world and the support of it institute, it would help the state government deliver on its mandates to the people.
Speaking to newsmen after a breakfast meeting, with Governor Abdullahi Sule in Abuja, the former UK Prime Minister thanked the governor for hosting him.
At the meeting, the two leaders discussed how the state would improve on delivering dividends and ways to assist the state harness its potential, especially by attracting investments to the state.
While reiterating his willingness to help the state through his institute, Tony Blair therefore, commended Nasarawa governor for his leadership qualities and for what he is bringing to the table as governor.
“I am a great admirer of what he is trying to do. Obviously, there is huge potential in the state. There are many great things happening and can happen there.
“Mine is to work with governments round the world and help them deliver. Since what you will find about governments the toughest thing is getting the job done. It’s a great pleasure to be with him, to exchange views and we look forward to working with his team,” he stated.
According to Blair, the biggest challenge in government today is delivering.
“You may have grand schemes and ideas and at the end, as a politician you got to make things work. We focus much on how we can help governments deliver. We built over the years some connectivity right around the world and it helps.
“Today, with many countries and states, the biggest thing is to ensure that people understand what is available in their country, in their state, how they can build the right partnerships,” he said.
The Tony Blair Institute (TBI), commonly known by its trade name as the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, is a non-profit organisation set up by former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair to provide advice to governments and “to help political leaders build open, inclusive and prosperous societies in an increasingly interconnected world.”
Governor Abdullahi Sule has expressed appreciation that the former UK Prime Minister accepted to pay him a visit.
“We are very happy that the former Prime Minister agreed to visit us.
“We have been working with his team here in Nigeria. He has a team in so many countries around the world,” Sule said.
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The governor used the opportunity to inform Blair about what his administration is doing to turn around the economic fortune of Nasarawa State, while also opening up on areas where the government will need assistance from the Tony Blair Institute (TBI).
“When we came in, we came with a document called the Nasarawa Economic Development Strategy, which we believed will help us drive our economic strategy. Nasarawa State has great potential in mining. In fact, we are called the Home of Solid Minerals.
“Why are we coming to you? Two things. One, it will help drive our governance structure. Nasarawa State is a state considered more or less a civil service state. It’s a state that is in a hurry to catch up with global trends. Secondly, you are a global person and you touch everywhere. You can assist us in the area of attracting investors. We are also an oil and gas state now,” he said.
The governor explained that the Nasarawa State Government is seeking to consolidate on its partnership with the TBI towards improving governance structure and attracting investments.
“He has been doing a lot and his team has been doing a lot to assist us in that. He just came to discuss further in those areas,” the governor added.